Public health promotes and
protects the health of people and the communities where they live, learn, work
and play. While a doctor treats people who are sick, those of us working in
public health try to prevent people from getting sick or injured in the first
place. We also promote wellness by encouraging healthy behaviors. From
conducting scientific research to educating about health, people in the field
of public health work to assure the conditions in which people can be healthy.
That can mean vaccinating children and adults to prevent the spread of disease.
Or educating people about the risks of alcohol and tobacco. Public health sets
safety standards to protect workers and develops school nutrition programs to
ensure kids have access to healthy food. Public health works to track
disease outbreaks, prevent injuries and shed light on why some of us are more
likely to suffer from poor health than others. The many facets of public health
include speaking out for laws that promote smoke-free indoor air and seatbelts,
spreading the word about ways to stay healthy and giving science-based
solutions to problems. Public health saves money, improves our quality of life, helps children
thrive and reduces human suffering.